[b-greek] Re: Speaking in Verbal Aspect (Porter)

From: Wayne Leman (wleman@mcn.net)
Date: Thu Nov 09 2000 - 12:08:33 EST

Mark Wilson decried:

> I have been trying to digest much of Porter's understanding of Greek
> Aspect. What seems to stand out is the unnatural way in which it must have
> been spoken, if his non-temporal verbal system is correct.

Mark, I understand your frustration, but aspectual (as opposed to tense)
languages occur all over the world. They are just as "natural" as tense
systems. Aspect languages are no more difficult for infants to learn to
speak than languages with tense more primary.

The greater difficulty is for us *analysts*, re-programming the way we think
about NT Greek, and also trying to understand how aspect languages work.

Koine Greek was a regular, natural language and children learned it at the
same age as children learn languages anywhere.

Difficulty, like beauty, is often in the eye of the beholder. For speakers
of aspect languages, our tense languages (like English, to a large extent,
altho English is also mixed partially aspectual, as are many languages) seem
difficult, at first, to them.

Perhaps those better versed in writing more pedagogically user-friendly
descriptions of Greek aspect need to help us all see how intuitively
straightforward the Greek aspectual system truly was. Now there's a good job
for someone who would like to make some money for the next generation of
better Greek language textbooks!

Wayne Leman
Bible translation site: http://bibletranslation.lookscool.com/

B-Greek home page: http://metalab.unc.edu/bgreek
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